Wednesday, April 06, 2005

some details of john paul's funeral made public

More details concerning John Paul's funeral have been made public. Basically, they all agree with the traditions surrounding papal funerals.

The actual transfer of John Paul's remains into the three coffins will occur on Thursday (April 7), a day ahead of the funeral on Friday. By that time, John Paul's closest aides will have placed a white silk cloth on his face and his white mitre on his chest as the aides utter prayers. A description of a papal burial is found here.

Also, it seems that it is unlikely that John Paul's heart will be buried elsewhere, a practice called the praecordia. This has been abolished by Pope Pius X.

Expect continued posts here about matters papal, including the continuation of the series "What happens when a pope dies." The next installments in that series will be entitled "Selecting a new pope."

I was just noticing that my recent posts have been all about the pope. Hmmm....But hey, a pope's death doesn't happen everyday and I am in a Catholic seminary, so this is all that we talk about these days. And, admittedly, John Paul was the only pope I've known. So, maybe I can be excused.

I only saw John Paul once in person. I was about 10 years of age at the time. He was on his popemobile and I was in the crowd mesmerized. I remember the crowd of people and the yellow and white colors of the papal flag everywhere. When the popemobile became visible to us, a roar of excitememt and applause came from the crowd. As his popemobile came several yards near me, he turned to our side then made a sign of the cross to bless us. Then the popemobile continued on its way. My mom next to me was astounded. As a ten year-old, I thought that was rather cool.

Anyway, read more about some of the details of the funeral here. This link from the BBC has some nice information concerning papal embalming. John Paul wasn't embalmed, but his predecessors were: popes John Paul I, Paul VI, and John XXIII were all embalmed.

Powered by Blogger